Entertainment

Is This Really Girl Power?

American Music Awards celebrities send oversexed messages to our young women

The music industry is known for pushing the envelope in pop culture, often issuing missives of defiance and protest through lyrics and performances — but Sunday’s American Music Awards set a new standard for sexed-up.

While sporting a big smile, Chrissy Teigen, who started her career as a Sports Illustrated swimsuit model, walked on stage wearing a dress that was slit up to her waist. Literally. And it was barely held together by big safety pins on each side.

“It was sleek, sexy and well put-together,” said ET.

“The star pushed the style to scandalous new heights,” said The Hollywood Reporter.

“Peep Show!” declared The Daily Mail — and seemed to suggest she had suffered a wardrobe malfunction. That would not be surprising, given that the dress didn’t allow for undergarments.

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Young girls who tuned into ABC on Sunday night well before bedtime to see popular acts including Justin Bieber, Selena Gomez, and Fifth Harmony saw dress after dress that seemed ripe for malfunctioning, each one revealing more and more skin.

Along with bashing new President-Elect Donald Trump, the stars’ message from the stage seemed to be that to grab the spotlight you need to undress, titillate, and bare as much as you can.

That path to stardom has already been paved countless times by Kim Kardashian — but this was a music show. Although the AMAs are essentially a popularity contest — winners are voted on by the public and determined by record sales, as opposed to the Grammys, which are voted on by a governing academy of professionals — the scene did more to confirm, once again, that sex sells.

Related: Our Misplaced Beyonce Worship

Teigen, who is married to John Legend, was there to introduce her husband. But she wasn’t the only one who caused a jaw-dropping reaction with her outfit.

Actress Olivia Munn wore a super short dress with a super deep neckline — and was praised for it.

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Erin and Sara Foster, the daughters of Grammy-winning producer David Foster, wore gowns that were distracting — to say the least — because it seemed as if one of them might wind up topless at any moment. (What do you suppose their dad said to the young women after he saw them on TV?)

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Of course, Lady Gaga forgot to wear a shirt.

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What’s more interesting is that the AMAs chose not to put all the awards on the air. Among the winners not shown: Blake Shelton, who won for Favorite Male Artist — Country, and Carrie Underwood, who was named Favorite Female Artist — Country. Were they just not spicy enough for the scene?

One person who sent a very different message from the stage was Selena Gomez, who was making her first appearance since entering rehab for anxiety and depression.

In a teary speech, she said, “[I] kept it all together enough to where I would never let you down, but I kept it too much together, to where I let myself down.” She said she had become “absolutely broken inside.”

The singer then spoke about the social media culture and said she no longer seeks that type of validation.

“I don’t wanna see your bodies on Instagram, I wanna see what’s in here,” Gomez said, motioning to her heart.

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